7 Questions with Michele Shaw
1. What are your favorite and your least favorite words?
I love almost all words in some way, but a few stand out as exceptional to me. Any word with an X is fun, flux being my personal favorite. Others I like: inspire, guffaw, stupendous, cheeky, love, kisses, rhythm, dodger, slither, scrumptious, catharsis, and harmony.
Least favorite? There really is no worse word than…drum roll please…moist. *shivers*
2. What turns you on creatively, spiritually, emotionally?
My creative juices always flow from my own emotions, and I am quite the emotional person. I’ll never run out of material. My moods, life experiences, observations, and how I feel about them burst into my writing, especially my poetry. People watching always gets a story going too. I see people interacting, imagine what they are talking about, what station in life they’re at, wonder at what they’re doing, and many times, they become characters. As to my mysteries, I was (once upon a time) an avid reader of true crime, and bits and pieces of real life cases do tend filter in. After all, real people truly are stranger than fiction. The stories I write are actually much tamer than the real stories I’ve heard.
3. What turns you off creatively, spiritually, emotionally?
I don’t think I ever turn off creatively, but the creativity can get dark when my own emotions get clouded with real life problems and stresses. I try to channel through the writing, again poetry tends to serve that the best, and sometimes this work is something I wouldn’t put out, but it helps me vent serious hurts and frustrations. Occasionally, even the most raw, dark pieces do make it online if I feel they have true merit and aren’t just me griping. 4. What is your principal defect, your biggest character flaw or personal weakness? My biggest defect…hmmm, how to choose? I’d say it’s that I love too much, hold too tight, let people take advantage of my inability to be anything but nice. People see niceness as a weakness and pounce on it. I think I need to toughen up. I have a thick skin for writing critique, but don’t return my text and I’m crushed. I hate it!
5. What moment or act in your career are you most thankful for?
I’m most thankful for a horrible experience early on. An influential individual (with a non-writing agenda I wouldn’t agree to) called my work “riddled with amateur mistakes” and said I’d never make it in publishing. All just to be spiteful. It really riled me up which motivated me, and at the same time, I learned right away that A. In this business, not everyone is nice. B. People with a little power can let it go to their head. C. Constructive criticism and an outright attack are two very different things.
6. How early is too early?
No such thing…and I don’t drink coffee.
7. Assuming heaven exists, what would you like to hear God (or Allah or Yahweh or Odin. Generally the Supreme Being of your choice.) say when you arrive at the pearly gates?
You did well.
You did indeed. Thanks Michelle! And thanks to you for reading!